Hand and Arm Signals

By Jashua Montanez

When it comes to the many responsibilities that a spotter has in any work environment that requires this role, the responsibility of being an extra pair of ears and eyes to safely direct an operator driving a vehicle is very crucial. Here at trainPOINT we’re working hard to prevent work-related incidents and fatalities, which led to creating a virtual work environment to teach future spotters how to perform signals to safely direct an operator. The main focus was the connection between a spotter and an operator to work together and perform the job in a safe manner.  We needed to simulate the experience of directing a vehicle operator with only using signals and no other input required, as well as having the ability of recording as many signals as needed for the job. And thus, the system was created.

The team at trainPOINT agrees on the importance of performing the actions that will be crucial in their role instead of solely relying on a theoretical assessment. Personally, I believe the best way to teach someone a skill is to have them perform the skill themselves. And if I’m being completely honest, there’s something very special about seeing the operator of a vehicle respond to a gesture that was made by someone using a virtual reality headset. But, it’s also giving the future spotter the chance to perform the same signals that would be used in their job site. Not only are we helping teach future spotters with the real-world experience of perform the hand and arm signals pertaining to their job site, but we’re simulating the entire experience virtually, which cuts down on training costs for companies, and most importantly it keeps everyone in a much safer environment.

As I previously mentioned, the only input that is needed from the user is their hand placements, no other buttons are required. Due to this, the spotter would complete the courses without ever thinking of how to perform the signals. We didn’t want the spotter to have to spend majority of their time learning how to perform the signals, we wanted them to run through the courses as if they were in a real-world job site. The seamless transition between working in a real-world procedure and a virtual procedure is what we strive for. If a person that has never had any virtual reality experience before can put on a headset and learn from our courses, then we know that our hard work has paid off!

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